Meet the Virginia Tech Hybrid Electric Vehicle Team Leads

The Hybrid Electric Vehicle Team (HEVT) team leads and the entire team are excited to get started with the new EcoCAR Mobility Challenge.

Our lead faculty advisor is Dr. Doug Nelson. Dr. Nelson has been the lead faculty advisor for HEVT since 1994 when the team was started. Dr. Nelson is currently a professor of mechanical engineering at Virginia Tech. When asked what he is looking forward to the most about the newest EcoCar Mobility Challenge, Dr. Nelson said he is looking forward to, “working with a new group of students, team leadership and incorporating propulsion autonomy.” Along with Dr. Nelson, Dr. Pretap Tokekar will be working as the faculty advisor to the CAV teams for HEVT.

Davide Ceritano the project manager for HEVT in the EcoCar Mobility Challenge at Virginia Tech. As project manager Ceritano oversees all of the different teams that make up HEVT. He said he is excited to, “look back at something [that the team] completed.”

The team facilitator for HEVT is Matt Dyke. He previously served in the United States Marine Corps and is currently a student at Virginia Tech pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering. He provides as a medium between graduate and undergraduate leadership.  He hopes that the team can tackle the complex engineering problems and teach the teams that, “fear is the relinquishment of logic”

The HEVT communications manager is Jacob Levin. Levin is studying public relations at Virginia Tech. Levin said he is, “excited to see the transformation of the stock blazer into the advanced blazer that the engineers will transform, all while promoting STEM to a target audience of 6th through 12th grade students.”

Daniel Budolak is the engineering manager for HEVT who is currently pursuing a Master of Science in mechanical engineering and researching robotics and controls. Budolak is looking forward to, “taking the Blazer apart and putting it back together while learning all the components of the vehicle.”

Christian Tollefson, CSMS graduate student team lead, said that the aspect of mobility that excites him the most is, “understanding the potential implementation methods and which is best suited for universal implementation in all vehicles.” Tollefson graduated Virginia Tech in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering and he is currently pursuing his Master of Science degree in mechanical engineer.

Thomas Legg works directly with Tollefson as his CSMS sub-team lead. Legg is currently studying mechanical engineering at Virginia Tech and he serves as the project manager for CSMS specific tasks as well as mentor his sub-team members. Legg is excited about the mobility section of the automotive industry because it has, “far-reaching impacts and autonomous driving has the potential to increase fuel economy and road safety.”

Rishit Modi is the PSI graduate student team lead. Modi is currently pursuing his Master of Science in mechanical engineering at Virginia Tech, he received his undergraduate degree at Maharaja Sayajiro University of Baroda, Vadodara in mechanical engineering. Modi said that the idea of mobility excites him because, “car-sharing has to be the most exciting prospect for the future of the automotive industry.”

Alec Husemeier is the undergraduate PSI mechanical sub-team lead for HEVT. Husemeier has been with the team since the Fall of 2017 as a junior team member on the mechanical sub-team. Husemeier says that he is, “excited to be part of the architecture design process and to learn from the challenges [the team] will face this first year.”

Seun Hyung Yang is the undergraduate PSI electrical sub-team lead for HEVT. Seun and his team have already been working on, “component selection including motors, inverters, ESS and competition deliverables.”

Clay Mangette, CAV graduate student team lead, said that the, “challenge gives me the opportunity to conduct research into autonomous vehicles and study some of the challenges of designing fully autonomous vehicles.” Mangette currently leads our CAVs team who has already been working on researching various sensor fusion concepts as well as developing an adaptive cruise control strategy. Mangette graduated from the State University of New York at Binghamton with his bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering in 2017. He is now pursuing his master’s degree in Electrical Engineering here at Virginia Tech.

Kish Jadhav works with Mangette as his CAV sub-team leader. Jadhav says he is excited to, “incorporate modern sensor technologies into a hybrid vehicle” through the EcoCar Mobility Challenge.

The team leads are all very excited to get to work in the newest competition with their teams and are eagerly awaiting the arrival of the 2019 Chevrolet Blazer. The team leads have already been hard at work preparing for the arrival of the car and getting their teams prepared.